How brokers convinced a manufacturer to move to Phoenix

Above: Kierland One, where Carlisle Companies will be headquartered by the end of the year Real Estate | 14 Jun, 2016 |

It’s not often that an Arizona broker can convince a North Carolina manufacturer to relocate its corporate headquarters to Phoenix.

But that’s exactly what happened when Tom Adelson, executive vice president at CBRE, represented Carlisle Companies, a Fortune 1000 business that makes products that range from commercial roofing to cookware to aerospace components and generates about $3.5 billion in annual revenues. In February, Carlisle leased 46,503 square feet at Kierland One and is relocating its corporate headquarters from North Carolina to Arizona by year-end, with plans for more than 100 executive and management positions.

The company’s CEO, Chris Koch, said in a statement at the time of the lease that Carlisle made the move due to a shift in its core business.

“We have become more global as well, expanding operations around the world. Our footprint has changed, and as a result, we have made the decision to relocate our corporate headquarters to Phoenix,” he said. “We are excited to become part of a dynamic Phoenix business community. Phoenix will position us closer to many of our major customers, our employees on the West Coast and in Mexico, and provide us better access to our Asia Pacific markets.”

AZRE talked with Adelson, who offers a little more insight as to how the deal was made.

AZRE: How did the Carlisle deal get started for you?

Tom Adelson: A friend of mine from the CBRE office in Charlotte, N.C., knows the corporate counsel for Carlisle and does work with them across the country and told me they were thinking about relocating to Arizona.

AZRE: What were the biggest challenges in the deal?

TA: Carlisle had to fit a lot of different parts because they own a lot of different companies. Most of the challenges were on Carlisle’s end, trying to figure out how much space they needed and how much growth they wanted to project ahead. The challenges were more on Carlisle’s end than mine. It was a pretty straight-forward real estate deal for me.

AZRE: Does sealing a deal that has such a big economic impact on the region faze you?

TA: Maybe it did early in my career, but I’ve been doing this for 30-some years. It’s fun getting to know the leaders of a multinational company like Carlisle and selling them on all the great things Phoenix has to offer and taking them to events like the Phoenix Open. That’s super fun, but I don’t really think about the economic impact the deals will have once they’re made.

AZRE: What’s your outlook for the next few years?

TA: I’m very bullish on Phoenix in general. We have the infrastructure, the weather and all the pieces in place to be able to continue to grow. I think we will need to do some unique things to get corporate America to look more closely at us. It’s tough to compete with places like Dallas for major corporate headquarters, but there is a good amount of growth here, particularly with the tech sector.

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